Police are celebrating a reduction in house burglaries of more than 10%.
Northumbria Police say the drop follows months of hard work by burglary teams in the force area who have made an impact by targeting a number of prolific offenders, with many being given significant jail terms.
Senior officers say the teams work to identify trends in a bid to take suspects off the street and protect the public and also work with other organisations to combat the issue - including crime-prevention leaflet drops and community meetings where people can bring valued items for tagging and secure logging to help protect them from theft.
This also helps to be able to reunite recovered stolen items with their rightful owners.
Northumbria Police say people in the area are now at the lowest risk of burglary in the country.
Detective Chief Inspector John Bensley, Northumbria Police’s lead for burglaries, said: “Burglaries are a very personal crime. They are intrusive and not only can victims suffer a financial impact but it can also cause significant lasting emotional trauma as well.
“We take a strong and robust stance on these types of crimes and afficers are constantly developing new tactics and techniques to track down offenders including obtaining intelligence of prolific offenders and tapping in to the local knowledge of neighbourhood teams to identify potential suspects.
“Bringing offenders before the courts isn’t our only priority when dealing with burglaries. We have a duty of care for the victims. “
People can also take steps to help protect themselves and their belongings:
*Lock doors and windows when you are not at home, even when you’re just out in the garden.
*Hide all keys, including car keys, out of sight and away from the letterbox.
*Install a visual burglar alarm and/or outside lighting to deter potential thieves.
*Leave lights in your house on a timer to make the property appear occupied.
*Make sure any fences are in good condition.
*Secure bikes and tools by locking them inside a locked shed or garage.
*Ensure side gates are locked.
*Tag your property with postcode and house number and register your property for free with Immobilise https://www.immobilise.com/
Police say people can contact police to report any suspicious behaviour in their area by visiting www.northumbria.police.uk or calling 101.
Suspicious activity can also be reported anonymously through Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.